Hifi Sean is one of East London’s most loved and most prolific musicians of the past couple decades. Having cut his teeth as the lead singer of nineties Scottish rock band The Soup Dragons, Sean went on to form The High Fidelity and become a widely successful DJ in London and beyond. This year has seen the release of his brilliant debut album Ft, with a who’s who of special guests worthy of a dream dinner party guest list! We are thrilled to have him join us for the latest edition of Pump!
Hifi Sean! It’s been a while since we last talked, how have you been?
Hi! I’ve been on promo duties with the new album and working on more little movies for tracks and running the record label Plastique Recordings and sorting future releases – all exciting artistic meanderings for the next few months!
You have been up to all kinds of things this year – releasing a debut album among other things, congratulations!
Thanks. The reviews and critical acclaim for it have all been amazing, and I’m so happy to see the finished work all connecting with people after the many years it has taken to put it all together .
There are some incredible collaborations on the new album – Yoko Ono, Bootsy Collins, Fred Schneider… How did you get involved with these incredible artists?
It was a family tree of things to be honest – each one different to the other in that respect. For instance, Bootsy Collins I know from when I was in my band Soup Dragons. We toured with Deee-Lite and he was playing bass for them and we became good friends. I recorded a track in the nineties with him so when making this album I thought it would be great to do something again. Fred from B-52s I know also from the band days, so yeah I suppose it was the rock ‘n’ roll network of artists who all connect with each other’s friends and friends of friends who know friends of friends… I am just really honoured to have worked with such amazing artists from my record collection!
Who else is still on your dream collaboration list?
I had a note on my phone and I kept writing mind flashes down and this is some of those that are on it from when I was making the album…
People like Wayne Coyne (The Flaming Lips) to Carly Simon to Kim Gordon (Sonic Youth) to Neil Diamond to Francois Hardy… It’s a very long list and goes on and on!
Can you tell us a bit about the song writing process? Was most of it done in person, or did it involve a lot of correspondence?
I did a lot of travelling making this album as I recorded the sessions and worked with the artists building the tracks over time ’til we were happy.
It was recorded in London, NYC, Chicago, San Francisco, Washington DC, Cincinnati , Toronto and Glasgow.
Wow, quite the international release!! Now that the album is out, what do the next six months hold in store for you?
I am writing and recording the next album at the moment which I would say sounds as good if not even better than this album. It is all based and named after something I saw scrawled on a toilet wall which is not only the title but the next album cover – once again capturing a life experience and putting it to work on my own material .
What do you make of all this talk of London’s dying nightlife?
Obviously Fabric was a kick in the nuts for club culture driven by fat cat money maker council developers , but things will always bubble underground and new things will appear and new scenes start.
I have never been busier playing some great parties and things look healthy to me, but what does annoy me is the telephone app culture. Get off your phones, get out, cruise and dance with real people and enjoy the moment instead of searching on your phone for a better moment that is never going to be there!
Can you give us a bit of an idea what to expect at Pump?
Dirty twisted house music with a few italo disco injections for the funk of it.
Catch Hifi Sean at Pump on Saturday 5 October from 9pm-3am at Dalston Superstore.